Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Please help me because apparently, I don't know how to use the library.

I got my library card last Tuesday and was really excited to start using it. I haven't been to a library for pleasure since – gah! – middle school and I remember all I read then were Stephen King books. So I was hoping to revisit that feeling of being in a nice comforting corner with a book that I am halfway through.

But this new library is so huge! I was just so overwhelmed by the shelves and shelves of books, and why was everything in hard cover? I hate hard cover books! The books I read need to be slim and easy to carry around because I only read on the subway!

So I just walked up and down the fiction aisle and looked at different titles and authors, but I just couldn't pick anything because I had the same feeling as when I walk around Blockbuster trying to figure out what to rent. I'm not a picky reader but I think my years of not-reading-for-pleasure made me want a book that I will really enjoy.

In the end, I just went to the computer and typed in Neil Gaiman and tried to find a Neil Gaiman book (Coraline – my review is below this post). Then I grabbed The Emperor's Children by Claire Messud because it was on the "Recommended Books" shelf. And for my third book, I just picked at random for an author's name I recognized and got First Love, Last Rites by Ian McEwan.

Really not the satisfying library lounge that I was anticipating, but I'm not sure how I should go about my book choosing in the future. So I think I will just go to the library with a specific book in mind and just search it in the system (and hopefully it will not be hard cover.) Any recommendations? My favorite books are East of Eden (my life and love). I know Steinbeck well), The Lovely Bones, and The Dark Materials by Philip Pullman (I worship this series.) I don't like chick lit because there's enough girlish drama among my friends so I don't need to read about it too; and I really enjoy great writing and great characters. To me, plot is sometimes secondary. I will also give just about anything a try.

2 comments:

blakspring said...

try and find a smaller branch, something cozier and more accessible. with your library card, you should be able to access the NoveList database through the library website. it is a database for reader's advisory and should be helpful. also try this website called The Reader's Robot http://www.tnrdlib.bc.ca/rr.html
you can play around with it, especially the "appeal factors"
i just finished reading Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Foer and really enjoyed it. you might also like The Handmaid's Tale by Atwood, a dystopia tale with women's issues.

denesteak said...

Thanks for the tips! also, I love Jonathan Safran Foer! I hear they are going to make that into a movie, and I wonder how it will fare. Have you read Everything is Illuminated? That became a movie, with Elijah Wood, but I just couldn't watch it...

Also, I am planning to pick up The Handmaid's Tale my next trip to the library.